Better video: lessons from ONA13

Better video: lessons from ONA13

Some lessons learned about shooting better video from the Online News Association conference which took place in October 2013 in Atlanta, Georgia.

  1. One session that yielded a lot of useful info was the Fast Track Video Workshop. Here’s a summary.
  2. Here’s the website set up by the speakers, which has several one-sheeter training guides.
  3. 1. Lesson learned: Shoot differently for mobile. With mobile use exploding, the experts at the Fast Track Video panel emphasized that video must be shot differently with mobile users in mind. For example, although getting close-up shots has always been important, Lam Thuy Vo, Interactive Editor at Al Jazeera America, and American University professor Andrew Lih say these shots are even more critical in our age of mobile phone viewing. (This sentiment was echoed in other sessions.)
    Close up shots are important b/c so much video is viewed on mobile now. Subject disappears on small screen if use wide shot. #fasttrackvideo
  4. Make content for the platform.Desktop, mobile are different for viewing.Nat Geo photographs things diff for mobile than desktop #videoona13
  5. When it comes to distribution, make sure your video is sized to where it is going to be #videoONA13
  6. What looks good on the desktop does not always look good on mobile #videoona13 #ONA13 @phoebedoris
  7. Mobile is growing nutbars. Hearing this sentiment again and again. #videoona13 #ONA13
  8. Another video-focused session that yielded some useful lessons was “The Power of Video Now.” Here’s a Soundcloud recording of the session plus a  “two-minute takeaway” video with the hosts, who were from Storyful, Google , National Geographic and the Washington Post’s PostTV.
  9. Two-Minute Takeaway: The Power of Video Now
  10. 2. Lesson learned: the second screen may soon become the first screen. That was one of the takeaways from the Broadcast for All session on second screens, which featured editors from ESPN, Al Jazeera and The Seattle Times. For some users who don’t have a television, the second screen is actually the only screen. ESPN philosophy on multiple streams is that it should be the “best screen available” to serve sports fans.
  11. Great question: What happens when the “second screen” (app, tablet) becomes the first screen? #broadcast4all
  12. .@Ramisms says second screen term is broadcast centric. @pstiegman says it is about best screen for that task at that moment #broadcast4all
  13. I agree, TVs will not be the “first screen” for too long. “Second screen” is more a broadcast-term for mobile/tablet. #broadcast4all
  14. See below for the summary and a Soundcloud audio recording of the Broadcast for All session.
  15. From Broadcast for All: Those who access ESPN via mobile tend to be the biggest consumers of ESPN programming via all platforms, which has led ESPN to bolster its mobile efforts.
  16. ESPN’s @pstiegman: 64% of ESPN mobile use occurs at home and 50% of tablet usage happens in the living room #broadcast4all #ONA13
  17. Also capitalizing on sports coverage, The Seattle Times started a second screen development a few months ago called GameCenter . It pulls together video plus scores/stats, tweets, live blogs/chats and photos during Seahawks and Huskies games together on a responsive designed dashboard. This takes advantage of the live users and the “morning after” users who want to catch up.
  18. Seattle Times @laurenrabaino #ONA13 #broadcast4all – sites could do more to capitalize on the “next morning audience” specifically in sports
  19. 3. Lesson learned: Best practice for promoting a video (or any major project) is to think about it and follow a strategy.
  20. To distribute video: Pre-tease, release, use all social sites, push on YouTube @oliviama #videoona13 #ona13
  21. Think holistically about every part of distribution when planning video rollout- @oliviama NOT: “If you build it they will come” #videoona13
  22. Create anticipation before a story. @mattmansfield says to focus on reach before, during and after a project #videoona13
  23. Find communities of interest and reach out, says NatGeo’s rep. Star does that with projects like #knowntopolice #VideoONA13 #ONA13
  24. 4. Lesson learned: Lots to explore. Google Hangouts on Air are an area unexplored by many news outlets but can provide a way to hit audiences twice – live and on a replay, both on G and YouTube. Other formats such as Instagram video, Vine, Videolicious, Tout and advanced YouTube functionality should also be considered. Google Hangouts are an easy free way to create content to generate social conversation.
  25. Hangout On Air is a really powerful way to have an authentic exchange between yourself, editors, reporters-Olivia Ma #videoona13
  26. I think Google hangouts are best when they’re raw, showcasing organic conversation, not over the top production #videoona13
  27. Newsy has been doing an interactive “News Your Own Adventure” function on YouTube. This ties into the idea of needing to consider the YouTube community of commenters, consumers and creators. News organizations need to figure out how to better tap into the fact that video is a two-way discussion.
  28. There’s room to grow with video formats. This clip uses YT annotations to choose your own news. #ONA13 #videoona13
  29. News Your Own Adventure: The Romney Tapes
  30. News orgs should think of online videos as streams. Maximize your own stream and explore others. – @DavidClinchNews #videoONA13 #ona13
  31. Talking about strategy for video on mobile. Seems like Instagram video is fast solution. Quick, simple and made for phone #videoona13
  32. 4. Lesson learned: cake vs. broccoli vs. granola cookies You can combine important information (the broccoli) with entertaining click-worthy content (the cake) — it’s just a challenge.
  33. “Cake and broccoli” – we can’t do Syria stories without the viral videos to support it says @davidclinchnews #videoona13
  34. Can the cake overwhelm the broccoli? Can’t ignore the cake, there’s a lot of money in cake. Find a middle ground. #videoona13
  35. Challenge: make the important interesting. (Sneak the broccoli in with the cake) #videoona13 #ONA13
  36. Videos can be “granola cookies” — fun approach while conveying useful information. #ONA13 #videoona13
  37. My takeaway: Content should reflect life, and sometimes life is funny, cute, dumb or just mindless. Don’t be snobby! #videoona13
  38. I think the entire #videoona13 crowd can hear my stomach rumbling. Broccoli vs cake vs granola cookie analogies not helping! #ONA13
  39. Cliche alert: At the end of the day, content is still king. Make sure it’s good.
  40. “Would you watch it?” “Would you share it?” Washington Post’s approach to video: #videoONA13
  41. Even if it’s a cat video, make sure it’s a good one. Matt Mansfield of National Geographic says obviously his news organization is into animals, but the overriding philosophy is “to tell meaningful stories in exceptional ways”.
  42. More from ONA 13: Here’s a Storify that Toronto Star Senior Digital Editor Erika Tustin and I created with highlights from the sessions.

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